When the work continues.
The last session I had was in 2018.
About to move back home to the UK, I felt in no way healed from the things that had happened. Sure, I was able to go about my day, continue my work, arrange moving companies and enjoy time with friends. But I wasn’t over anything. I’m still not.
Occasionally, under the warm shower in my little flat, I’ll have an emotional flashback, need to calmly talk myself down so I can wash the conditioner out of my hair and walk it off.
Sometimes the dreams are so damning they suffocate me and I have to put my hand on his chest, regulate my heartbeart back to normality.
You see, the trauma I experienced that led to therapy was just a snippet of what therapy opened up for me. I’d make a joke here about how being adopted is just signing yourself up for a life of dysregulation but holy shit, that’s true.
When you go to a therapist for help with a part of your life that has fucked you up, you have no idea how easily you will see how it got to this. And in my case, good grief was that path laid out.
Therapy taught me how to speak to my childhood self. Coping mechanisms for intrusive thoughts. Self-regulating techniques. Great! If I master these, I’ll be cured. I’ll be real again. I’ll have a self.
It’s been 3 years. I speak to my childhood self regularly. I still use coping mechanisms when the thoughts creep in. I have varied success at self-regulating. I definitely have a self now— but it didn’t come gift-wrapped to open and put on as a reward for successful therapy. I am constantly learning, bit by bit, how to accept who I’ve found. How to be me.